The Big Ten Conference began its 48th annual media days on Thursday morning, which allowed commissioner Jim Delany and several head coaches to preview the upcoming season. Among those who met with the media on the first day of the event was Ohio State head coach Ryan Day.
Here’s a brief recap of what Day had to say:
- Day said KJ Hill’s decision to return was “a huge deal for us.” He’s just 48 receptions short of Ohio State’s career mark.
- Day believes the defense has a lot to prove this year. Added the players are “salty” — likely the first time that word has been said by an Ohio State head coach.
- Day said Tuf Borland is being pushed by Teradja Mitchell at middle linebacker.
- Day hopes the linebacker room follows the blueprint laid out by defensive line coach Larry Johnson, who rotates players in and out throughout the game.
- There are seven offensive lineman gunning for five spots, and Day believes all seven could play. Mentioned Thayer Munford, Wyatt Davis, Josh Myers, Jonah Jackson, Branden Bowen, Nicholas Petit-Freer and Josh Alibi.
- Day on former head coach Urban Meyer: “You don’t replace a legend.” Added he’s just trying to be himself.
- Day on Ohio State not being favored by the media to win the Big Ten: “I love our team. These are great kids who are working very hard. But we have a lot to prove. This is a new staff. This is a new team. We haven’t done anything, and we need to do that.”
- Day on if he’ll use Michigan being favored to win the Big Ten as bulletin board material: “I think people read it. I think our guys see it.”
- Day mentions how just one quarterback on the roster was on the team last fall. “It’s an interesting situation. The first six games, the quarterback is going to be green.” Calls on defense to pick up the slack.
- Day said Meyer, who maintains an office across the street from the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, has been a tremendous resource as he begins his first season as a head coach. “He’s been unbelievable in terms of understanding when to be there and when to step away.”
- Day wants to have a rotation of six or seven wide receivers.
- Day looks at UCLA head coach Chip Kelly like a father, brother or uncle to him. “He and Urban are probably the two biggest influences, Steve Addazio would be the third, in what they’ve done for me and my career.”
- Day added that his offensive philosophy centers around what Kelly taught him. “He combined the spread run game and pro passing game in the NFL, and that’s kind of our philosophy.